The great secrets and teachings of the 'Women's Mysteries' - the wisdom of the cycles of the Earth, the Moon, our lives and the menstrual cycle; how to live according to the seasons, the moon phases and your menstrual cycle; understanding and flowing with the transformational potential of the menstrual cycle, of pregnancy and of birth. Connecting with the Divine Feminine and the shamanic journey of the feminine cycle - menstruation, pregnancy, childbirth, menopause.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Pregnancy The Inner Journey Reunion, Concord February 2010

More beautiful babies, more amazing births, each a unique journey to the place of surrender, the place where a woman becomes a mother, whether that be for the first time or second or more. Each time another surrender and another becoming, as the mother-heart grows bigger and bigger.


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

November 2010 Pregnancy The Inner Journey Workshops

The journey of motherhood, which includes preconception, pregnancy, birth and beyond into forever, when viewed from a shamanic perspective offers many lessons, insights and a deep knowing of the flow of nature and life. The Pregnancy The Inner Journey workshops allow us that experience and we are all forever enriched by sharing our stories and hearing those of "the other voices of our selves speaking". There were two pregnancy workshops held this early summer, one in the Southern Highlands of NSW and one in Kew in Melbourne.

(front left to right) Louise, Judy, Tania, (back left to right) Kate, Sharon, Adriana, Monika, Lizzy and Delphi

(front left to right) Diana, Charlotte, Harriet, Amanda, Liz, (back left to right) Stephanie, Melody, Donna, Aenea

Moonsong - Re-Membering Ourselves

The Moonsong workshop is often a time when everything comes together and makes some sense. The influence our rite of passage into womanhood, our menarche (first blood), has had on our development into womanhood is often a missing piece in the jigsaw puzzle of our lives. So much of the journey is reclaiming the feminine power that was missed, taken away, not claimed and not even known during our experiences of menstruation, childbirth and menopause. During November, two Moonsong workshops were held, one in NSW, one in Victoria, and through the women who came more healing has occurred, more reclaiming has happened and the word will be spread.

AND, check out Renae's blog re attending Moonsong http://twothowandzen.blogspot.com/

(front left to right) Sally, Judy, Julia Rose, (back left to right) Sharon, Lizzy and Delphi, Bronte, Hazel, Leia


(front left to right) Alyce, Natasha, Charlotte, Melody, Heather. (back left to right) Renae, Peta, Liz, Stephanie, Jane

November Pregnancy Workshop Reunions

Tis a beautious thing to come together again, for a re-union, a making again our one-ness that we experienced at the Pregnancy The Inner Journey Workshop when the babies were on the inside!

The stories shared by the women are true 'hero-ine's journeys', tales of traveling deep within and returning with the 'treasure'!

Each story tells the journey of a woman birthing not only her baby but herself as a mother, and that happens whether that be for the first time or the fourth. And for those not birthing babies, birthing the next version of themselves.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Beltane 'Welcome to Womanhood' Ceremony

At Beltane we honoured two maidens with their 'Welcome to Womanhood' ceremony. Sitting in a circle together the women spoke about what they were told at the beginning of their menstrual cycles and what they wished they'd been told. They also shared what they have learned over the years from their menstrual cycle. This time, with several of the young women who have themselves had their 'Welcome to Womanhood' ceremony, many of the sharings were about how honoured and supported they had felt and do feel. The healing is happening. Blessed Be! And this time, a great privilege for me, was that I was actually the midwife at the birth of one of the maidens! Such an honour to be in attendance at two of her rites of passage!

My words to the maidens:
"May your life as a woman be filled with love and joy and at the inevitable times when it is not, may you know that this is temporary. And at the low times you need to feel them fully, knowing that 'this too will pass'. Remember that your bleeding time is our time to let go of what no longer serves you so as to uncomplicate your experience of life with unnecessary dramas, fears or worries. Blessings on you little Sister. May the moon light your way in the dark and the sun lead you to your brightness. And may you feel the Earth, our Mother, speak to you and guide you on your path."


Monday, September 13, 2010

The Spring Equinox or Ostara - September 23 approacheth!

This is the time of equal day and equal night, the balance of light and dark, and so at this time we have the chance to invite balance into our lives. Add this to the energy of Spring, and as we see in our gardens, we also have the opportunity for new growth, fresh starts and new beginnings. Now would be the appropriate time for the Easter Egg hunt!

We celebrate Easter in the southern hemisphere at the same time as the northern hemisphere, simply because of generational habit, not seasonal appropriateness. The word Easter comes from the name of the ancient anglo-saxon spring Goddess Eostra or Eostara. And the Easter bunny and Easter eggs are all symbols of the fertility that is celebrated at the Spring Equinox. Eggs are a symbol of new life.

To honour and celebrate this time you could gather with some like-minded folk, or with your children and conduct a ceremony to give thanks for new ways, new opportunities and balance in your lives.

Here's a suggestion for a simple ceremony to honour the Spring Equinox with your family and friends.

Paint an egg, perhaps simply decoratively or perhaps with symbols to give particular meanings, to represent something new starting in your life, or something you would like to start. Make a 'nest', place it in the centre of your circle that you create together to do your ceremony. Do what you do to make sacred space, call for protection, guidance and support and focus together. Go around the circle and have each person explain what their egg represents for them, what their dreams and intentions for new growth this season are and then place the egg in the nest. Once all the eggs are in the nest have everyone focus on them and send their loving supportive energy. This can be done by visualising pink light flowing from your heart area. Conclude your ceremony going around the circle again with each person making a wish for their community and one for the planet.

Blessed Be

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Imbolc 2010


Imbolc, aka Candlemas, is this week on August 8th at 0045.

Following are some words about this seasonal shift and ancient festival and some suggestions on how to honour this time.

At Imbolc (or “Ground Hog Day” as its called in North America when it occurs on February 2nd) we see, feel and hear the beginning signs of Spring. Winter is over, Spring cometh. It may well still be very cold but the energy has shifted. It is the time we see new growth following the seeming dormancy of Winter. Imbolc is a time of hope, a time filled with the excitement of new possibilities for the future, either brand new possibilities or those we’ve dreamed up, ‘seeded’ over the winter. Imbolc was traditionally a Celtic Fire Festival dedicated to the Goddess Brigid.

At Imbolc, the seed, held in the dark Earth over the Winter has germinated, it finds it’s way through the Earth’s surface to see the light, to show itself, to grow.

Aligning with the Imbolc energy - taking our cues from Nature, we can now ‘see’ the beginnings of our plans and dreams that have been gestating within us over winter. ‘See’ these plans and dreams as ‘seeds’ and see what’s ‘sprouting’ after the months of incubation.

Ask yourself:

Do my dreams and plans look like they have or will “sprout and grow”?

If they don’t, how do I feel about that?

What do I need to do to nurture the new growth?

Is it time to revisit my plan or dream making or am I getting the ‘dream’ I ‘need’?

As well as a time of new beginnings, Imbolc is a potent time to clear away past disappointments, to let go of old dreams and to step fully into the present, to ‘rebirth’ ourselves. Our ‘dreams’/desires and attachments reveal a lot about us and their manifestation, or not, is part of this information.

Imbolc is either dream ‘tweaking’ time or dream nurturing time.

Thinking metaphorically, ‘seeing’ your life as a garden, and thinking of ‘weeds’, what can you see peaking it’s head up again? Do you really want to take that through the next growth cycle again? to get bigger and stronger? Or can you ‘nip it in the bud’ so to speak and replace it with the ‘growth’ you want to see happen this cycle?

Time to be the loving gardener at the beginning of the springtime of this next year’s cycle in your life.

You can enact this energy ceremonially in a variety of ways.

* Create an Imbolc altar with things around you, both your treasures and gifts from Nature, that remind you of the energy of the beginning of Spring.

* You could literally nurture some seedlings so that you ‘see’ what it takes to nurture new sprouts. You could do this with your children, for quick results you could sprout alfalfa or other beans and perhaps name the sprouts for a new way of being or learning etc eg “as I care for these sprouts I care for the new part of me that will be braver/kinder/tidier/more focussed etc” .

* Light a candle, call on the energy and power of Imbolc. Write down all your dreams and plans you’ve been “gestating”, see them as sprouts all in a row and now as the loving gardener, cull the sprouts that have less life force, those that ‘look’ less likely to survive and focus your energy on the sprouts that have the best chance over the coming cycle of survival and growth to their full potential. The conditions this coming cycle may suit some “sprouts” over others, bring that awareness into your culling process. That’s what this time gives you - the opportunity to ‘see’ which of your seeds/plans/dreams have the greatest chance of survival so you can let go of the others and nurture and focus on these. Notice any feelings or past issues that come up for you as you choose one ‘sprout’ over another and journal with yourself to find all that represents for you and how that may inhibit or obstruct your path forward nurturing your chosen ‘sprouts’. Let go of the ‘sprouts’ that aren’t going to make it, perhaps they will another time, perhaps not. Their life force, as in the garden, will ‘feed’ the remaining ‘sprouts’. Be ruthless and courageous with the culling of your ‘sprouts’. How many ‘sprouts’ can you manage/nurture this Spring? Maybe 4, maybe 1? You will know. And remember, you will get this opportunity every year.

* Start your Spring Cleaning, both literal and metaphoric. Empty out the old and make room for the new.

* Emerge from the darker part of the cycle into the building light as the days get longer and the sun gets warmer. It will still be dark early and cold during the weeks ahead but with a slow lengthening of the days. It is as if we slowly emerge from the dark where we have been relying on our inner senses to say “see in the dark”, to feel our way around in the darkness. Think of the metaphoric meaning of this and the opportunity to bring these inner senses out, to bring the skills of clairvoyance, clairaudience and clairsentience into our lives more. Do you know what your ‘access sense’ is? How you receive information?

* Prepare a feast of local seasonal foods and give thanks at your table for all that this new cycle will bring you. Traditional foods of Imbolc include those that represent growth, such as seeds (sesame, sunflower, pumpkin, etc) as well as dairy foods, bread, cake, curry, onions, leeks, garlic honey and herbal teas.

* Herbs and flowers associated with Imbolc include: angelica, basil, bay, benzoin, celandine, heather, myrrh, snowdrop, rowan and all yellow flowers. Perhaps make a wreath of one or some combination of these or use them in your cooking or herbal teas.

* Make candles as was the tradition at this time. Use them for your spell work, they will hold the energy of hope and potential that this time brings.

Imbolc is the time to visualize life flourishing with abundance, creativity and renewed strength.

Tasmanian Workshops July 2010

At Oyster Cove in Hobart in July, with the help of the magnificent Kristan and the support of the generous Elise, I gave a Pregnancy The Inner Journey Workshop, a residential Moonsong that was actually a party and two divine gatherings of Maidens and Mothers.
Invoking the Birth Goddesses at the Pregnancy Workshop

Dana and Glenys making Goddess Eyes

Dana, Jane, Chelsea, Glenys and Sam

Moonsong Workshop, Oyster Bay, Tasmania July 2010

Moonsong at Oyster Bay in Hobart with a group of friends, exploring the women's mysteries and reclaiming feminine power.

Oyster Bay, Tasmania, Moonsong Altar

Sending healing prayers to the Earth

Maidens and Mothers Moonsong Tasmania July 2010

The Maidens and Mothers I met with last year gathered again. Twas a lovely reunion, 2 of the maidens had reached menarche during the year and they shared their experience. Such a blessed opportunity to hold such preciousness with the honour it so truly deserves.
Drawing pictures of their inner journey

The next day a group of 10 mothers and maidens gathered for an introduction to the menstrual cycle. The mothers all shared what they had been told before they started their cycle, what they'd learned through their years of menstruation and what they wish they'd been told as young girls. The gathering helped to demystify the menstrual cycle for the girls, introducing the opportunity inherent in the cycle for renewal on the physical, emotional and spiritual planes and provided some healing and insights for their mothers.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Pregnancy Workshop Reunion

The May 2009 Southern Highlands Pregnancy Workshop had their reunion, one year on. And what a beautiful thing it was! Beautiful mammas and their so, so scrumptious babies. Rachel returned from New Zealand for the reunion and Kristan from Tasmania. We sat in circle, called the Goddess, and gave thanks.

The women told their birth stories and shared what they learned about themselves from the experience and how they saw / felt this was the next piece for them in their life journey. It's such a revelation to view our childbirth experiences like this, bringing consciousness to the process and respect to our journeys.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Autumn Moonsong Workshops

In April in Melbourne, eight of us gathered again around our central altar, co-created this time with talismans that each woman brought to signify where she was in her menstrual cycle and her life cycle.
The many faces of the Goddess.

And in May at my home in the Southern Highlands, Moonsong on Mother's Day. A special gathering blessed by the attendance of 2 beautiful teenagers.

May Moonsong Southern Highlands
The Moonstick Ceremony

Monday, May 10, 2010

Autumn Pregnancy - The Inner Journey Workshops

In Autumn in Melbourne, 10 of us gathered around our central altar and shared a special time together. There were so many Goddess Eyes created those days, lots of women's wisdom shared and a deep connection to our inner knowing and the sacredness of pregnancy, birth and motherhood.

One of the subjects that we dialogued on was Orgasm as Teacher and Preparation for Childbirth. Much deep wisdom connecting a woman's experience of orgasm with clues for what she will need in labour and how her partner can best be with her at that time was shared. See my blog on http://www.kindredcommunity.com/ for some words on this subject:

http://www.kindredcommunity.com/blogs/guests/jane-collings/orgasm-as-teacher-and-preparation-for-childbirth/p/2039



Melbourne April Pregnancy - The Inner Journey Workshop
In May, at my home in the Southern Highlands, 12 of us gathered for a Pregnancy Workshop, 10 pregnant women, the majority with their first babies and 3 of the second time Mums returning for their 2nd Pregnancy Workshop. As well as the regular juicy stuff in a Pregnancy Workshop, this week we also sang with Ganga and belly danced with Monica.


May Southern Highlands Pregnancy - The Inner Journey Workshop

Monday, May 3, 2010

EarthDance Samhain Gathering 2010

We honoured and celebrated the seasonal sabbat of Samhain, Hallowe'en, in the dark, under the starlit night and a waning moon. Dressed in scary costumes, the likely suspects arrived with carved pumpkins and photos of their departed loved ones for the altar.

We honoured our ancestors and the turning of the wheel of the year, scryed in the crystal ball, burned our fears away and then played traditional Hallowe'en games - eating donuts hanging from strings with no hands and bobbing for apples.

In the dark, with the campfire glowing we feasted on pumpkin and autumn vegetable soup, damper, sausages and pumpkin tarts. Then finally! - we got to handing out the treats.
Lots of fun.

The gathering was a perfect melding of suitably solemn and riotous fun. And we all were reminded of the inevitability of endings, of death, and our responsibility to be Present and in full awareness of the sweetness of life.

Blessed Be.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Pregnancy - The Inner Journey Workshop, Concord, February 2010

On February 20th and 21st, at the Sydney Pregnancy Centre in Concord, the beautiful Temple cared for by the wonderful Kylie Hennessey, yoga teacher, Calmbirth Practitioner, Mother of 2, we gathered for a weekend Pregnancy The Inner Journey workshop.

It's such a blessing to create sacred space, sit in circle with each other and feel and know the sacredness of being a woman.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

EarthDance Summer Solstice 2009

Our EarthDance community honoured and celebrated Litha, the Summer Solstice, together last December. We made a big circle, 60 or so of us, all ages. We sang, danced, drummed, set our intentions and feasted. Kylie invoked the faeries and they were everywhere!

And, to align with the energy of the season, Midsummer, the peak of
the sun, the time of maximum potential, equivalent to the energy of a full moon and ovulation - each family visited the central altar, set down a flower, and gave thanks for what they wanted to see come to 'full bloom' in their lives.

And, as it usually does each time we gather to mark the sabbats, it
rained. As they say - "good ceremony brings rain!"